The world’s largest passport producer is working on digital passports which could be stored in smartphones.

The digital passports could work similarly to mobile boarding passes issued by airlines which can be saved on smartphones. This would allow travellers to move between countries without the need for any identification documents.

“Paperless passports are one of many initiatives that we are currently looking at, but at the moment it is a concept that is at the very early stages of development,” a spokesperson for the UK-based company, De La Rue, told The Telegraph.

Security would be the big challenge to getting this off the ground. Governments will have to be sure that the passport can be protected from forgery if a phone is lost or stolen. They will have to work together to reduce international barriers.

De La Rue’s Chief Executive Martin Sutherland has told The Times that it is already testing the concept, but added that it is a long-term project.

The service would be particularly useful in a region like ASEAN, which is looking to integrate its markets, increase connectivity and reduce international barriers to businesses through the ASEAN Economic Community.

Image by British Airways, licensed under CC BY 2.0